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500 families flee homes in BIFF attacks

BANGSAMORO NEWS UPDATES • 15:04 PM Fri Sep 12, 2014
1,044
By: 
Edwin O. Fernandez
Soldiers rest after pursuing BIFF in Midsayap (John Unson)

MIDSAYAP,
North Cotabato (Sept. 12/NDBC) – About 500 families have fled their homes when
Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) harassed several villages of
Midsayap, North Cotabato Thursday.

But Supt.
Reynante delos Santos, Midsayap police chief, said most of the displaced
families have returned home Friday morning.

The Midsayap
local government unit reported about 300 families from Barangay Polomogen are
now temporarily housed in Barangay Bual Norte, also in Midsayap.

Another
displaced families, about 225 are now housed in Barangay Malingao center from
two sub-villages.

Municipal
social welfare officials have started attending to the needs of affected
families.

About 50 BIFF
first harassed Barangay Baliki, near the border of Midsayap and Datu
Piang. But alert soldiers and infantry
men repulsed the attackers who fled toward Barangay Polomogen en route to
northern Kabuntalan area in Maguindanao.

Delos Santos said
an improvised explosive device, made of 81 mm mortar with cellphone as mobile
phone as trigger mechanism, was recovered by Army bomb experts.

It was meant
for soldiers who were to conduct clearing operations in the area, it was the
BIFF practice of leaving IED in its escape route,” Delos Santos said.

Midsayap has
returned to normalcy but police and military forces remained on alert.

We have
reports BIFF will carry out diversionary tactics like setting off bombs in the
town center, so we are on alert,” he said, adding that some BIFF are already in
town with explosives.

Colonel Dickson
Hermoso, speaking for the 6th Infantry Division, said the recent
harassment by the BIFF has bearing with the submission of the draft Bangsamoro
Basic Law to Philippine Congress.

After clearing
operations, 10 BIFF guerrillas and two soldiers were killed while more than a
dozen other bandits were hurt and carried away by retreating gunmen. (NDBC)

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